On the wall in my office is a poster that says, "Kids—a Natural Resource." What energy we would have, what creativity would be revealed, what joy we would experience, if we would truly value our children the way we would a natural resource.
Look at the faces of the congregation when children are presenting a program and you see the smiles and feel the genuine warmth that comes when children are leading out in worship and praise to our Lord. We enjoy what they offer us and we thank them for their good work because we are truly blessed by them. The question, however, is still valid when we ask ourselves how we can make sure that we really value our children. What do our children actually need in order to feel they are an important part of a church family? Do we let them know that they are needed for more than just putting on a Thirteenth Sabbath Program?
This year at Sligo Church I have had the opportunity to be a full-time pastor for our children and it has been an exciting challenge to attempt to enrich existing activities and develop new programs for our children. My underlying belief is that the children need to know that they are valued members of our church. We have tried to show them that coming to Sligo Church to fellowship and worship can be meaningful and enjoyable. We want them to feel that they are special by involving them in the worship service in the main sanctuary and other worship services related to their experiences and paced to their attentiveness. Above all else, we are doing all in our power to maximize the Christian growth of our children.